Killing Your Best Friend by Valda Taurus is a thrilling murder-mystery set amid the rich backdrop of the Alaskan wilderness. Set in a rustic and remote small town – the type of place where everyone knows everyone’s business and residents befriend each other not wholly by choice, but by lack of alternatives for companionship. Ivan Kortnev is murdered in grisly fashion, with a screwdriver to the heart, and his best friend Alexander Gray, an ex-convict who spent a decade in prison for murder, is convicted despite his inability to recall events of the night. Detective Andy Mohr is convinced, even with lack of material evidence, that Gray is wrongfully convicted. Led by his unwavering and stubborn sense of justice, Mohr embarks on a journey to weave through the entanglements and secrets of Cantwell’s residents to uncover the truth about Kortnev’s suspicious death.
Detective Mohr is arguably the most dynamic character in the book. He is a clear protagonist, fulfilling the “hero” role in this riveting story. Highly independent, his ways of showing care and regard for others often are interpreted as sterile. A natural-born altruist, he has a penchant for ethics over glory and is resolute in his will to uphold what is just and condemn the unjust. In doing so, he is creative in his problem solving and will explore all avenues possible to prove his case, making him the perfect fit to delve headfirst into Gray’s peculiar case and the ominous secrets it holds.
The most palpable theme in this book is the human threshold for pain - what is a person capable of if pushed to their limits, and to what lengths will they go to gain control over their circumstances? An internal longing for something tragically unattainable is what motivates each of the characters to pursue their respective courses of action. This creates an interesting call to action; as the characters realize what they have become, they are forced to cope with this new identity, even if that means forging a completely new sense of identity.
The development of events in this book is slow to ignite, reflecting the progression of actual real-life murder-mysteries, many of which are known to span decades of investigation, if solved at all. The chapters are short and digestible, yet still provide important pieces of information that are instrumental in contributing to the greater story. This is the type of story that ages like fine wine – the longer a reader becomes immersed, the more the story is built, complete with plot twists and gripping revelations.
Killing Your Best Friend, written by Valda Taurus, is a wonderful take on an enthralling murder mystery. This novel takes you on a wild adventure through a murderous relationship, broken marriages and brand-new beginnings.
The story takes place in a small village in Alaska. Alexander Gray, the town drunk, is accused of murdering his best friend, Ivan Kortnev, on Mother’s Day of 1999. This event occurs many years after Gray is convicted of a previous murder which took place on Mother’s Day of 1985. Taurus sends us on a brutal journey through the depths of Alexander’s childhood and marriage in order to determine a motive and to figure out if he is in fact, the true killer. After Detective Andy Mohr finds interest in the case, he decides to pay a visit to the small village. He uncovers many family secrets, some of which reside just next door to Mr. Gray. After many visits and late nights of contemplation, the mystery unfolds into an appalling revelation. Nothing is as it seems.
The use of multiple characters providing their take on the event, stages a very intriguing storyline that holds the reader’s attention throughout the entire book. We are taken through several complicated, entangled relationships in order to build the anticipation of what is to come. Such relationships would include those of Alexander and Marta Gray and Dustin and Tammy Bartow. These are just two of many that Taurus shares. Without these mind-boggling discoveries amongst the relationships, the story would not be as thrill-seeking as it is. Every detail that is uncovered is just as shocking as the last. The entire storyline was very well thought out.
I did not find any negative attributes to this book. There is profanity involved, however, I find it necessary in order to portray the personalities of certain characters. There were hints of sexual content as well, but none of which were explicit or dwelled upon for too long. No editorial issues are present. Everything is grammatically correct. Considering all aspects, I would rate Killing Your Best Friend, four out of four stars. This is a must-read novel.
Most murder mysteries, including this one, should be for mature audiences. For those who enjoy a good unsolved murder, this would be the perfect story. I would not limit the audience to merely murder mystery readers. I also feel that this could be included in the genre of a perplexed romance novel as well. Valda Taurus can reach a large variety of readers with this storyline. It was truly a great read.
Sociologist and Author Valda Taurus Debuts Gripping Suspense Novel That Explores the Depths of Human Behavior.
MONEE, Ill., Sept. 1, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- Author and sociologist Valda Taurus (https://valdataurus.com/) announced the release of her first novel, the mystery thriller: "Killing Your Best Friend." Revolving through the various perspectives of the main protagonists, the narrative voices include: Tammy Bartow; her neighbor, and wife of suspect Marta Gray; and Detective Andy Mohr. Taurus weaves the plot elements deftly, implementing twists and turns of suspense that have already garnered rave reviews for keeping readers on the edge. "Killing Your Best Friend" is available for purchase via Amazon.com.Synopsis: Tammy Bartow is wrestling with another bout of insomnia when she glances out her bedroom window and sees a shadow creeping along the cold Alaskan ground, near her neighbor's yard. Ever since her neighbor Marta Graymarried Alexander (Ax) – an ex-con who has already served time for murder – fear hangs over the community like a dark cloud. But as she eventually returns to bed, Tammy has no idea that in a few hours, she will learn a murder took place in her neighbor's barn. After Marta finds the corpse of Ax's best friend, Ivan, all evidence points toward her husband, who had been drinking all night with the deceased, and eventually blacked out. He cannot remember anything. Marta, blind with love, refuses to believe that Ax could have committed such a chilling act, and she convinces Tammy of the same. Meanwhile, as Detective Andy Mohrattempts to sort out this complex case, he realizes that this is the second time Ax has murdered on Mother's Day. Is it pure coincidence, or a bloody pattern? In this gripping mystery, two determined women and a seasoned detective are led down a complex path to solving a murder. "I wanted to show raw life: when things don't always work out as they should," said Taurus. "It is a book free of judgement, which appeals to the understanding of action through the prism of our psyche, rather than in terms of approval or disapproval. We cannot change the past because it's gone. And we cannot tell what tomorrow will be like because it has not happened yet. But what we can do is live today – as life is happening."To learn more about Valda Taurus and her latest book, go online. Or follow her via social media: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube.About Valda Taurus, M.A.Valda Taurus is inspired by stories of survival in extreme situations, whether it be a natural disaster or an inner psychological struggle. She holds a master's degree in sociology and a minor in psychology that complements her desire to be a judgment-free observer of people. On the path to becoming a writer, she completed an advanced fiction-writing course. Killing Your Best Friend is her first novel in which she touches on the topic of destructive feelings such as guilt and self-accusation. Explore her latest work by visiting: www.ValdaTaurus.com. Media Contact: Terri Alvey (assistant to Valda Taurus)+firstname.lastname@example.orgSOURCE Valda TaurusRelated Linkshttps://valdataurus.com/